Black Axanthic Ball Python: Characteristics, Care, and Breeding

The black axanthic ball python is a genetic morph characterized by its unique coloration. It lacks the typical bright yellow and brown patterns seen in normal ball pythons, appearing almost entirely black. This striking coloration is the result of a recessive genetic mutation that affects the production of pigment in the snake’s scales.

As for breeding, black axanthic ball pythons can be bred with other morphs or even with normal ball pythons to produce visually striking offspring. Genetic knowledge and careful planning are essential for successful breeding, as different morph combinations can produce a wide range of color and pattern variations. The resulting hatchlings may display traits such as black scales with white markings or unique pattern variations, making them highly desirable among reptile enthusiasts.

Description of Black Axanthic Ball Python

Unlike the typical Ball Python, which has a combination of light and dark colors, the Black Axanthic Ball Python is completely black from head to tail. Its scales are glossy and reflect light, giving it a sleek and ebony appearance.

This snake species is native to sub-Saharan Africa and can be found in countries such as Nigeria, Togo, and Benin. In the wild, they inhabit forests and grasslands, where they primarily feed on small mammals like rats and mice.

Due to their unique appearance, the Black Axanthic Ball Python is a popular choice among reptile enthusiasts and collectors. They are often kept as pets, and their docile temperament makes them suitable for both beginner and experienced snake owners.

Breeding Black Axanthic Ball Pythons can be challenging due to the recessive nature of the Axanthic gene. However, with careful selection of breeding stock and proper genetic planning, breeders can produce beautiful offspring with the coveted black coloration.

Characteristics of the Black Axanthic Ball Python

The Black Axanthic Ball Python is a unique and sought-after morph of the ball python species. Its distinct black coloration sets it apart from other ball python variations, making it highly desirable among reptile enthusiasts and collectors.


The Black Axanthic Ball Python displays a deep, dark black coloration across its entire body. This melanistic trait is caused by a genetic mutation that inhibits the production of yellow and red pigments, resulting in a striking black appearance. The snake’s scales are glossy and smooth, giving it a sleek and elegant look. It typically has a pattern of black scales, although some individuals may exhibit faint traces of gray or brown.

Despite its black coloration, the Black Axanthic Ball Python often has lighter eyes compared to other ball python morphs. Its eyes can range in color from light gray to silver, which provides a beautiful contrast against the black scales.

Size and Lifespan

The Black Axanthic Ball Python is a relatively small snake, typically reaching a length of three to five feet. Females are generally larger than males, with lengths of up to six feet. These pythons have a robust and muscular build, enabling them to easily maneuver through their environment.

In terms of lifespan, the Black Axanthic Ball Python has an average lifespan of 20 to 30 years under proper care and conditions. With proper nutrition, habitat, and veterinary care, these snakes can enjoy a long and healthy life.



The Black Axanthic Ball Python is known for its docile and calm temperament, making it an excellent choice for snake enthusiasts of all experience levels. It is generally non-aggressive and rarely displays any aggressive behaviors. However, like all snakes, it is crucial to handle them with care and respect to ensure their well-being and prevent unnecessary stress.

Feeding and Care

Feeding a Black Axanthic Ball Python is relatively easy, as it primarily consumes small to medium-sized rodents. Frozen and thawed prey, such as mice or rats, are commonly offered to these snakes. It is crucial to provide appropriately sized prey to prevent regurgitation and digestive issues.

As for its habitat, the Black Axanthic Ball Python requires a secure and spacious enclosure with proper temperature and humidity levels. A well-ventilated glass tank or a reptile-specific enclosure with a tight-fitting lid is recommended. The enclosure should be equipped with appropriate substrate, hiding spots, and a water dish for the snake’s comfort.


The Black Axanthic Ball Python is an exquisite and captivating snake known for its striking black coloration. Its unique appearance, combined with its gentle temperament, makes it a popular choice among snake enthusiasts. Proper care, nutrition, and a suitable habitat are essential for ensuring the well-being and longevity of this extraordinary reptile.

Caring for the Black Ball Python


Line the bottom of the enclosure with a substrate such as cypress mulch or coconut husk bedding. This will help maintain the humidity levels and provide a comfortable substrate for the python to burrow if desired.

Temperature and Humidity

Monitoring and maintaining the correct temperature and humidity levels are crucial for the overall health and well-being of your black ball python.

The ambient temperature in the enclosure should be around 80-85°F (26-29°C) during the day, with a slightly lower temperature of around 75-80°F (24-27°C) at night. Provide a temperature gradient by using heat sources such as heating pads or ceramic heat emitters at one end of the enclosure. This allows the snake to choose the desired temperature for thermoregulation.

The humidity level should be kept between 50-60%. You can achieve this by misting the enclosure with water regularly, placing a water bowl large enough for the snake to soak in, and using a hygrometer to monitor the humidity levels.


Remember to provide a clean water bowl for your black ball python at all times to ensure proper hydration.


When handling a black ball python, it is crucial to approach them calmly and confidently. Support the snake’s body fully, avoiding any sudden movements that may startle or stress them. Gently scoop up the snake and allow it to wrap around your hand or arm, providing security for them.

By following these care guidelines, you can ensure the health and happiness of your black ball python and enjoy the companionship of this remarkable reptile.

Breeding Black Axanthic Ball Python

Breeding Black Axanthic Ball Pythons can be a fascinating and rewarding experience for reptile enthusiasts. The process requires careful planning, a suitable breeding pair, and proper care throughout the breeding season.

1. Selecting the Breeding Pair:

  • Ensure that the pair is of the appropriate size and weight, as this can significantly impact the success of breeding.
  • Consider the genetic history of the potential breeding pair, as certain genetic combinations may produce desirable offspring.

2. Preparing the Breeding Enclosure:

  • Create a spacious and suitable breeding enclosure that mimics the natural habitat of the Black Axanthic Ball Python.
  • Provide appropriate hiding spots, temperature gradients, and humidity levels to ensure the well-being of the breeding pair.

3. Introducing the Breeding Pair:

  • Once the breeding pair is selected and the enclosure is prepared, carefully introduce them to each other.
  • Monitor their behavior closely to ensure compatibility and to prevent any aggressive interactions.

4. Breeding Season:

  • Black Axanthic Ball Pythons typically breed during the cooler months, often in late fall or winter.
  • Gradually decrease the temperature and daylight hours in the enclosure to simulate the change in seasons and encourage breeding behavior.
  • Provide the breeding pair with a suitable nesting box, filled with a moist substrate, to facilitate egg-laying.

5. Egg Incubation:

  • After the female has deposited her eggs, carefully remove them from the nesting box and place them in an incubator.
  • Maintain the temperature and humidity levels within the incubator to create optimal conditions for egg development.
  • Monitor the eggs regularly and be prepared for an incubation period of around 50 to 60 days.

6. Hatching and Care of Hatchlings:

  • Provide appropriate housing, temperature, humidity, and feeding for the newborn hatchlings.
  • Closely monitor the health and development of the hatchlings and seek professional veterinary care if necessary.

Breeding Black Axanthic Ball Pythons requires patience, knowledge, and dedication. It is crucial to prioritize the well-being of the breeding pair and the offspring throughout the entire breeding process. With proper care and attention, breeding these unique snakes can be a truly rewarding experience for reptile enthusiasts.